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View Diary: "Twelve Traps to Avoid" By George Lakoff and the Rockridge Institute (197 comments)

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  •  neo-liberal economics (0+ / 0-)

    a la Firedman

    “To ‘get the best’ out of the global economy, Friedman advises nations to adopt a one-size-fits-all ‘Golden Straitjacket,’ his shorthand for the neoliberal agenda of shrinking government and social safety nets to balance public budgets, keeping wages low to minimize inflationary pressure, privatizing all public assets and putting them into play in the global securities markets, deregulating commerce to give free reign to market forces, eliminating tariffs and quotas to allow goods to move freely across your borders, giving priority to export production, and opening everything to foreign ownership. Bridling the government like this gives free rein to what Friedman calls the ‘Electronic Herd,’ the high-rolling financial speculators who will run your way and drop billions of highly leveraged dollars into your economy.

    “When the herd arrives, quickly grab as many dollars as you can before it senses weakness, wipes out the value of your currency, and stampedes away in search of new pastures. We mustn't, Friedman cautions, be distracted by the inequality, environmental destruction, joblessness and economic insecurity, and loss of community and cultural identity the Electronic Herd brings. This is simply capitalism's ‘creative destruction’ at work. Mourn not if your neighbor stumbles and falls, for he is now your competitor -- his misfortune your gain. Just run faster: ‘Think of participating in the global economy today like driving a Formula One race car, which gets faster and faster every year. Someone is always going to be running into the wall and crashing, especially when you have drivers who only a few years ago were riding a donkey.’

    “Friedman doesn't offer the losers much of a ‘cushion’: be a winner or be road kill, those are your options. Lose your job in Maine? Look for another in San Diego. What about the family and friends left behind? Tough. The Golden Straitjacket is a harsh task master. Can't find a job in San Diego? Then borrow a few million dollars and place some bets in the global financial markets. Make a bad bet and lose it all? Declare bankruptcy and try again. You weren't born a multi-millionaire with a line of bank credit? Then get a bathroom scale and offer to weigh people on the street corner for a fee.”We Are the Capitalists.  You Will Be Assimilated.  Resistance Is Futile.

    Another review (with a similar interpretation) of Friedman’s book The Lexus and the Olive Tree is at here.

    "There is no limit to what you can do if you have the power to change the rules." -Josh Marshall

    by grollen on Mon Sep 18, 2006 at 10:41:49 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

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